My 6 Week Keto Journey: The Beginning
You probably already have a thousand question. What's keto? Why the heck are you doing this? Isn't ketosis bad for you? Well, let me walk ya through it and what I hope to get out of this. Today marks day one of the challenge, and WARNING this post may get a little vulnerable. Maybe by the end of this some of ya'll will join the keto train. Doesn't hurt to try and improve your health! (ok that's a lie, it hurts and we all know it).
If you've read my about me or my story, you'll know I've got some effed up hormones. Low thyroid, low cortisol production, low DHEA, irregular periods, weight gain, blah blah blah. You get it. Shit's messed up dude. BUT things have been getting EXPONENTIALLY better in the past 6 months. 6 months ago I couldn't go to the gym, tolerate working, had no period and felt like a walking zombie. Yet over the past half year I've set serious work/sleep boundaries, and successfully improved my hormones resulting in energy I haven't felt in years. But.......there's a little something I'm not too happy about.
Ya see, in order to improve hormone production I had to make sacrifices. I didn't go to the gym for 4 months (or if I did it was usually just walking), I went to bed extremely early and I had to eat. ALOT. I ate a lot of food. All the time constantly eating. I mean, what's new? But in order to gain energy and my period back I ate whatever I felt like (paleo of course), whenever I wanted. Long story short, I've gained 20 lbs. I also developed some un healthy habits. I have bouts of binging and then wanting to starve myself because I feel so guilty. The guilt then results in binge drinking to forget what I've just done. And repeat. Just thinking about the damage I've done here really upsets me, and I'm committed to break this cycle. I'm doing this keto challenge to become mentally healthy and lose a little of the weight I gained.
So, wtf is keto?
Not gonna lie I've done this before. 6 months ago before my adrenals went to total shit, I went hardcore keto. I lost a lot of weight! But felt like a boat with the hole in the bottom, slowly sinking. I won't bore you with the details, but my body was in no shape to undergo that process. On top of it, I wasn't eating enough. So this time around I'm a man with a plan!
The ketogenic diet is a high fat, moderate protein, low carbohydrate eating style. I can hear it now,"But isn't fat bad for you? You're going to get heart disease!" Hold your horses honey. Let's clear some things up. Fat is freaking AWESOME for you. Especially the saturated & monounsaturated types. Our cell membranes are layers of saturated fats, fats act as hormone precursors, they provide sustainable energy, keep insulin levels at bay, improve digestion and SO much more. But the idea behind ketosis is that your carbohydrate level is SO low, that your body now has to shift from burning sugar to fat. And not just any fat. Your BODY fat. Can I get a hallelujah?
By depleting your body of carbs, the sugar (known as glycogen) that is stored in the liver is completely depleted and the body then turns to dietary fat & body fat for fuel. Once this process is adapted, the fat is then broken down and converted to produce ketones. Ketones are magic, and are actually the preferred energy source of the heart and most parts of the brain. The results of becoming "fat adapted" (meaning your body uses fat for fuel) and sliding in to ketosis include: abundant energy, reduced cancer risk, reversing Alzheimer's, lean muscle mass gain, reduced body fat, sustained appetite, lowered inflammatory markers, reversed diabetes & more.
My weigh in & what I'm eating
I probably should have mentioned this earlier, but this challenge is actually through my gym. It's over 6 weeks to see who can lose the most body fat (and the winner gets $1000). The gym will administer the work outs but the nutrition is up to us. We weigh in 3 times and step on this badass machine that tells us our body fat, water weight and lean muscle mass. Seriously love hate relationship with that thing. My results?
141 lbs, 30 % body fat
Let me just hate on myself for 5 seconds......OMG EW. Im disgusted by this for some reason. Ive gained 20 lbs!! And mostly in body fat. Ew. But whatever I'll get over it. So what am I eating?
Around 1400 calories, 70 g protein, 20 g carbs & 117 g fat.
I eat twice a day and fast at night through the morning (at least 12 hours of no food). My work outs are also usually fasted, meaning I don't eat before them. I eat an ABUNDANCE of food and fat. And if I'm still hungry, I eat more. No deprivation here! But for 6 weeks this is where I'll stay. Lets see how it goes.